The quarterback is the heart of all NFL teams. They are also the heart of your fantasy teams. Millions of people are beginning to prepare themselves for the upcoming 2021 NFL season. Draft day is coming up so quickly and it’s one of the best times of the year for football fans. I don’t know about you, but the draft day is the day I anticipate almost more than any other day of the year. It’s a close second to my wedding anniversary, in case my wife reads this.
Over the next few weeks, fantasy managers will be studying fantasy-related material. What draft strategy is best, who is poised to break out, and who will disappoint? The team at TeamRiseorFall has you covered with everything you need. Everything needed to prepare for the 2021 fantasy football season can be found on https://teamriseorfall.com/fantasy-football-draft-kit/
But let’s get back to the quarterback position and see who will provide value on draft day. Based on the average draft position (ADP) data from Underdog Fantasy, these quarterbacks will finish above where they are currently being drafted. Let’s get into it.
Currently, Ryan is being drafted as the 17th quarterback off the board. He only finished below this ADP once in his career and that was in 2015. Most recently, Ryan finished as QB12.
Ryan isn’t the sexy pick these days. He doesn’t run and isn’t flashy like a lot of the younger quarterbacks in the league. Ryan has reliability like no other. He has played all 16 games in every year since 2009 except for 2 seasons. He’s also never played in fewer than 14 games either. Playing in every game, for a bad team currently, locks him in for over 625 attempts in 2021.
Heading into 2021, the Atlanta Falcons have made some changes that are worth noting. Julio Jones was traded to the Titans. Sure that’s a big loss but Calvin Ridley has emerged as a true WR1. To help fill the void of Jones, however, the Falcons drafted Kyle Pitts with the fourth overall pick in the 2021 draft. The running game will still be average at best. Mike Davis comes in as the RB1 since Todd Gurley is now an unsigned free agent.
The volume for Ryan will keep him as a fringe QB1 for another season. He consistently throws over 4500 yards and has thrown for 26 touchdowns in two straight seasons. Julio was never a big touchdown guy so I only see this touchdown total going up this year. Pitts should make an impact in year one.
Quarterbacks like Ryan are hard to find these days. He is one of the safest picks at the position. He has a couple of elite weapons at the wide receiver and tight end position. Lock this man in as a sure thing to outperform his ADP.
The most likable quarterback in the league has found himself a new home. Currently, on Underdog fantasy, Fitzpatrick is being drafted as QB20. The 4 quarterbacks that started for Washington last year, would’ve combined as QB26. Fitzpatrick is not on the same level as Haskins, Allen, Smith, and even Heinicke. On a per-game basis in 2020, Fitzpatrick averaged 19 points a game. Take that over the full season and he finishes as QB15.
Washington is looking to be competitive with their elite defense and upgraded offense. Besides the addition of Fitzpatrick, Curtis Samuel signed via free agency and drafted Dyami Brown. Returning from last season are Terry McLaurin, Antonio Gibson, and Logan Thomas. McLaurin looks ready for his third-year breakout. Gibson emerged as a top running back and still has room to grow. Logan Thomas broke out last year and finished as the TE3 in PPR formats.
Fitzpatrick averages 1.85 touchdowns a game over the past three seasons. That is worth mentioning because the quarterbacks last season in Washington only threw for 16 scores. Fitzpatrick would’ve thrown 25 if he played a full season.
He has rushing ability as well. He isn’t afraid to take off and run. He averages 3.75 rushes per game and 4 touchdowns over a full season. These numbers will all elevate in 2021. The team will need to throw more than Miami did last year. There’s a solid floor for Fitzpatrick and I expect him to throw the ball 600 times this year.
This offense is loaded. As mentioned, the team wants to win. I know Heinicke showed promise out of nowhere last year during the playoffs. He will have a great chance to learn as he watches Fitzpatrick lead this team in 2021. As long as the team is competitive and has a shot at the playoffs, Fitzpatrick is the starter.
Daniel Jones disappointed a lot of fantasy managers in 2020, finishing as QB25. Those managers haven’t forgotten either as he is being taken as the 23rd QB off the board. You can point the finger at almost anyone as to why last season was a bust. The sophomore slump was real but year three is here and signs are pointing towards a bounce back. Saquon Barkley should play more than last year, even if Week one seems murky at the moment. Kenny Golladay was added to give him a true WR1 option.
The Giants haven’t had a wide receiver to be excited about since maybe Plaxico Burress. Golladay gives them a big target on the inside who can beat almost any corner in the league. In his last full season, he caught 11 touchdowns. That’s the same amount Jones threw in 2020. The receiving unit in 2020 was disappointing. With less attention on them along with the addition of Toney in the draft, 2021 is looking better.
Barkley is returning this season. Opposing defenses will be focusing on him to stop the run. Let’s be real, the Giants offensive line is bad. The run game will have to be successful and even with those struggles last year, Wayne Gallman found some success. A successful run game opens up Jones to have more time to find his target or take off on the ground.
Photo credit: Jasen Vinlove, Ashish Priyadarshi, Seatacular, AP